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Two-year-old twin makes history after receiving hospital ’s 300th heart transplant

Tue, 09/13/2016 - 15:39
The cookies for Dean Andersen’s welcome-home celebration were decorated with “#300,” fitting for the two-year-old who, just six weeks earlier, received the 300th heart transplant performed at Boston Children’s Hospital. “Dean does things in his own time and in his own way,” says his mom, Janet Andersen. “His transplant was no exception.” The Boston Children’s Heart Transplant Program performed its first transplant in 1986, and this May marked the program’s 30th anniversary. Dean’s transplant in June was yet another reason for celebration. “Milestones like these are not accomplished without our amazing multidisciplinary staff, whose unending commitment and dedication provide an incredible model of excellence; the families and their children, who have taught us so...
Categories: Publications

From Chronic Kidney Disease To The Gift Of A New Life

Wed, 09/07/2016 - 20:21
Authors: Julika Wocial (JW) and Michael Moore (MM) MM The need for a donor After being diagnosed with chronic kidney disease I was able to lead a full and productive life for 25 years, although more recently my energy sagged. Looming options were dialysis, the 5-7 year wait for a deceased donor or a living donor. Dr Google said ihatedialysis.com. A living donor was the best option. But how? It must be different for each patient - a direct ask seemed weird, but silence was not an option. Happily I had made no secret of my lousy kidneys thus, 'How you doing?' lead on to the need. JW What it means to consider living donation I met Michael 18 years ago: my mentor and colleague. One day he told me his kidneys were failing; he needed a kidney transplant. After initial shock of the news and tr...
Categories: Publications

Artificial intelligence could improve diagnostic power of lung function tests

Sun, 09/04/2016 - 21:12
Artificial intelligence could improve the interpretation of lung function tests for the diagnosis of long-term lung diseases, according to the findings of a new study. (Source: ScienceDaily Headlines)
Categories: Publications

Entrepreneur with GSK roots targets lung transplant survival rates with UNC technology

Thu, 09/01/2016 - 20:35
In a tiny lab in Chapel Hill, a 3-year-old startup with UNC-Chapel Hill technology is trying to help lung transplant patients defy the odds. Each year, about 2,000 people receive lung transplants. And the five-year survival rate for those patients is just over half, according to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. Renovion CEO Dan Copeland says a product being developed in Chapel Hill could fight that statistic. “We want t o be the first drug to be FDA approved for lung transplant patients,”… (Source: bizjournals.com Health Care:Pharmaceuticals headlines)

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Categories: Publications

The Laser Probe, The iKnife and The Cutting Edge of Surgery

Wed, 08/31/2016 - 20:29
If the thought of going under the knife fills you with fear, be reassured. No longer is surgery the brutal and hazardous experience faced by our ancestors. Thanks to wonders such as laparoscopy, robotic solutions, and, more recently, the iKnife and the laser probe, surgical intervention is getting safer all the time. Archaeologists believe that people have been carrying out surgery for up to 11,000 years. Cranial surgery, known as trephination, probably dates back to the Neolithic era. It involved drilling a hole in the skull of a living person. Speculation suggests it was done to cure disorders such as convulsions, fractures, headaches, and infections. The Ancient Egyptians used the same operation for "letting out" headaches and migraine. From 1812 onward, the New England Journal of ...
Categories: Publications

Saving six: Life before and after transplant

Wed, 08/31/2016 - 11:57
An organ transplant is a life-changing event extending far beyond the operating room, the clinics and the hospital walls. Read about five children, one young adult and their families, whose lives were forever changed by the Pediatric Transplant Center at Boston Children’s Hospital. Lydia’s liver transplant, a mom’s gift Dawn Cavanagh gave her daughter life twice — first when she was born and, again, when she gave 13-year-old Lydia a piece of her liver last summer. The donor-approval process, which occurs with Boston Children’s partner Lahey Hospital & Medical Center, required hours of medical screening, including an interview with a social worker, who asked if Dawn expected anything in return for being Lydia’s liver donor. “And I said, ‘Of course I expect somethin...
Categories: Publications

Swiss approve reimbursement for Mallinckrodt treatment

Tue, 08/23/2016 - 11:31
Mallinckrodt PLC said Tuesday that Swiss regulators have approved for reimbursement a treatment for patients who develop certain complications following lung transplants, including the pharmaceutical company's Therakos Cellex photopheresis system. Switzerland's Federal Department of Home Affairs has approved reimbursement of extracorporeal photopheresis (ECP) treatment — during which blood cells are treated outside the body and returned to the bloodstream — for patients there with bronchiolitis… (Source: bizjournals.com Health Care:Biotechnology headlines)
Categories: Publications

In the Loop: Transplant Patient Takes Home Gold

Mon, 08/22/2016 - 21:00
The 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro are over and Mayo Clinic lung transplant patient Curtis Higgons is back home in Jacksonville polishing his medals. But he didn't get them in Rio. He earned them during a competition that ’s also a pretty big deal: The 2016 Transplant Games of America. "They're set up [...] (Source: News from Mayo Clinic)
Categories: Publications

Dallas transplant company was losing money, but fixed its business model

Thu, 08/18/2016 - 20:03
If you have a bad business model, you have a bad business model. It doesn ’t matter whether you’re selling cars, lemonade or legal services, or recovering hearts, kidneys, livers and lungs for transplant. That was the situation Patti Niles found herself in when she started her role as president and CEO at Dallas-based Southwest Transplant Alliance almost four years a go. The more organs the alliance recovered, the more money it lost. Niles set out to stop the financial bleeding and to dramatically… (Source: bizjournals.com Health Care:Biotechnology headlines)

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Categories: Publications

SynCardia denies competitor ’ s market exit claim

Tue, 08/16/2016 - 21:30
SynCardia Systems isn’t exiting the market quite yet, according to a press release posted today in response to a competitor’s claim. Syncardia makes an artificial heart system designed to replace the functions of both the left and right ventricles and all 4 heart valves. “SynCardia’s machine works quite well. But it’s a very old machine with a big air compressor … I’m not surprised that they’re heading out of the market,” said artificial heart developer Carmat’s chief exec Marcello Conviti, according to an article on Seeking Alpha. The company said that it will “emerge from Chapter 11 reorganization” with a new owner, Sindex, on September 16, and went on to contest each point in Conviti’s statement. Syncardia touted the functionalit...
Categories: Publications

Sharing Mayo Clinic: Double Lung Transplant Recipient Beats Cystic Fibrosis

Sat, 08/13/2016 - 21:00
When Tammy Bolerjack was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis at age 18, she found herself frequently in and out of hospitals for treatments to help her breathe. Running 5K races and half-marathons certainly wasn ’t something she envisioned in her future. Little did she know then that eventually a double lung transplant at Mayo Clinic'sFlorida campus would not [...] (Source: News from Mayo Clinic)
Categories: Publications

Students seek to reduce deaths from battlefield injuries that block breathing

Thu, 07/28/2016 - 16:04
Undergrad engineers have designed a low-cost, low-tech device to make it easier for combat medics to create an artificial airway and pump air into the lungs of wounded soldiers. (Source: ScienceDaily Headlines)
Categories: Publications

7 Ways Your Height Affects Your Health

Sun, 07/17/2016 - 14:12
At 6 feet, 8 inches, Dr. Eeric Truumees literally stands out. “People remember who I am,” says the orthopedic surgeon in Austin, Texas. But despite height’s association with social and professional benefits, such as appearing more attractive and earning more money, towering over others has downfalls, too. “The bane of my height has been hitting my head on things,” Truumees finds, “and as I get a little slower and little less flexible, I find I’m doing that more often.” That’s just the start of height’s influence on health. Here are seven medical issues that may disproportionately affect people who are taller or shorter than average: 1. Longevity From an evolutionary perspective, there’s a price for enjoying the perks o...
Categories: Publications

TransMedics adds $13m to $51m funding round

Tue, 07/12/2016 - 15:55
TransMedics said yesterday that it added $12.5 million to the $51.2 million equity round it closed in May, taking its total raise to more than $63.7 million. Andover, Mass.-based TransMedics developed the Organ Care System, which is designed to perfuse donor organs with warm, oxygenated blood and monitor its status until transplantation. “We are thankful and excited to be supported by a world-class syndicate of new and existing life science investors. This financing strongly positions TransMedics to capitalize on the significant market opportunity in front of us,” CEO Dr. Waleed Hassanein said back in May, when the company announced the funding. The round was co-led by the Fayerweather Fund and Pharmstandard International S.A., represented by InBio Ventures, Ervington Investme...

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Categories: Publications

Personalized Medicine: The Way Forward?

Wed, 07/06/2016 - 19:46
This article will look at some of the strategies already available to help healthcare professionals meet individual patient needs, in the multifaceted field of personalized medicine. Personalizing drug therapy for depression Research suggests that around 50 percent of patients with depression do not respond to first-line antidepressants. What can explain this, and how can it be solved? Current treatment is often a case of trial and error. A patient may take one medication after another, often for 12 weeks or more each time, while symptoms remain the same, or worsen. A team from King's College London in the United Kingdom recently announced a blood test that can predict with accuracy and reliability whether an individual patient will respond to common antidepressants. This, they say, "...
Categories: Publications

When Parents Get Cancer, Children Are Often The Forgotten Victims

Wed, 06/29/2016 - 21:45
On the first day of spring 2007, Francesca Giessmann, 43, a marketing executive and holistic health coach from Kirkland, Washington, was rushed to the emergency room with severe stomach pain. After running numerous tests, doctors gave her the diagnosis of stage 3 non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Shocked and saddened by the news of her cancer, Giessmann's thoughts quickly turned to her son, Leo, who'd turned 3 years old the month prior. "Leo was very young and could not fully understand what was going on," Giessmann said. "Our pediatrician suggested we try to keep everything normal. I spent a great deal of time in bed. Leo related to my disease based on my port. He thought I had a boo-boo." Giessmann, who has had an enormous amount of health complications and side effects since her cancer treatmen...
Categories: Publications

Delirium Common After Lung Transplant, Tied to Poorer OutcomesDelirium Common After Lung Transplant, Tied to Poorer Outcomes

Mon, 06/27/2016 - 21:43
Delirium is common following lung transplantation and is associated with greater use of medical resources and worse outcomes, new research suggests. Reuters Health Information (Source: Medscape Transplantation Headlines)
Categories: Publications

Pole Vaulter With Cystic Fibrosis Clears Odds For Survival

Mon, 06/27/2016 - 20:55
BOSTON (CBS) — Clearing the bar and the challenges of life and living with cystic fibrosis far longer than anyone thought he would, Jerry Cahill says exercise has made all the difference.  He is in Boston for the premiere of a documentary about his extraordinary life.  This pole vaulter from New York not only has beaten the odds, he’s crushed them. “I’m 60 years old today, yes,” says Cahill smiling. And that’s a remarkable feat.  Jerry was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis when he was a kid. “You build up a bacteria, the mucus gets really thick, and it starts to clog up the airways,” he says. When Jerry was diagnosed the average life expectancy for someone with CF was in the teens.  Today it’s 38. “When I was diagnosed the doc...
Categories: Publications

Double the joy, following heart-lung transplant

Mon, 06/27/2016 - 10:56
Nicole, left, and her twin sister Isabella Nearly six months following a heart-lung transplant, Nicole Kouri makes a triumphant return to school, alongside her twin sister Isabella. It was a pact she made with her Dad back in August of 2015, while her friends were lying by the pool, soaking up the final days of summer, and Nicole was lying in a bed at Boston Children’s Hospital. 14-year-old Nicole was born with a ventricular septal defect (VSD) — otherwise known as a hole in the heart — and pulmonary hypertension, a serious condition associated with VSD that makes it difficult for blood to flow properly through the lungs. Being sick was Nicole’s “normal.” “I knew I couldn’t do much physically, but I’ve always lived life. I was on a basketball team. I did a 5k run and ...

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Funding to help improve quality and quantity of donor limbs, tissues for transplant

Mon, 06/27/2016 - 03:00
(Case Western Reserve University) A Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine faculty member has received $998,500 from the US Department of Defense to develop a new approach to improve the quality and quantity of limbs and tissues obtained from brain dead organ donors. Benefits also could be extended to the more standard transplanted organs (e.g. kidneys, hearts, and lungs). (Source: EurekAlert! - Medicine and Health)
Categories: Publications

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